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App Annie’s State of Mobile 2022 report has landed, and it offers a fascinating insight into the mobile apps industry and its continuing growth. We take a look at the story of Locket, a clever little photo-sharing app that shot to the top of the App Store last week. We also look at a product not in the App Store, Wordle, and report on how developers of clone apps tried to cash in on the viral puzzle game. And What’s dAppening? takes a look at Australian Open NFTs.

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🎬 Takes

📱 📈 App Annie – Insights from the “State of Mobile 2022” Report

We often say that “there’s a lot to unpack here” when it comes to our takes. But there’s really a lot to unpack here, so let’s dive straight in. App Annie, considered the go-to guys for everything on the global apps industry, has released its State of Mobile 2022 report. It’s gold dust for app devs, businesses, and anyone looking for insight into the mobile app industry. So, what nuggets have the maestros at App Annie uncovered in 2022? Perhaps the biggest takeaway is that the mobile ecosystem is healthier than ever, with 2 million new apps and games arriving in 2022. FinTech was a big winner, with a 28% YoY increase in finance apps downloads, bolstered no doubt by the rise in cryptocurrency trading. Shopping apps boomed with over 100 billion hours spent browsing and purchasing on the apps of various retailers. We were impressed with new app features from Snapchat, Instagram, and Pinterest, which used innovation – including VR/AR (Snapchat’s Black Friday AR event was a particular highlight) to augment the shopping experience. We were well aware that food and drink apps were on the rise, as we have built products for brilliant startups like Curbside Kitchen and TwentyTables, and we are in the testing phase for the super-exciting Hype Night, so it was no surprise to learn that 62 billion hours were spent in food-and-drink-related app sessions. Meditation and wellbeing apps were also trending among Gen Z, and we have been in on the ground level there, too, working with our friends at Second Breath to bring their spiritual mediation app to life. That’s just a small snippet of what’s in the 2022 App Annie report; a fascinating insight into the mobile-first economy. #AppAnnieGoldDust Read more here.


💓 📲 Locket – App for Sharing Photos to Home Screens Rockets to No.1

So, in light of App Annie’s report, let’s ask: what does it take to build a successful app? Without sounding too corny, all you need is a good idea. Just ask Matt Moss, the developer behind Locket, which hit no.1 in the App Store last week. Moss, who was worried about missing his girlfriend when she attended school in the fall, decided to build an app to allow him to share live photos to her iPhone home screen. Effectively, it turns Apple’s widget system (where you see info like news and weather) into a mini social networking app. Moss built the app over two weeks 😯, initially thinking it would be a private and clever (and undeniably cute) way to maintain a rapport with his girlfriend. But friends liked the idea, and it snowballed. Over 2 million people had downloaded Locket by January 11th. And today, it’s still the no.1 free app in the App Store – knocking the mighty TikTok off the top spot, no less. Ironically, Moss gives credit to TikTok for Locket’s success, as he got millions of views when he used the platform to showcase the app’s features. Nonetheless, it’s a clever idea with a cute backstory, and we love it. #LocketIsNoOne Read more here.


®️ 🧩 Wordle – Viral Puzzle Game is a Smash Hit, But There’s a Sting in the Tail

Wordle – it’s the addictive puzzle game that millions of us are playing, so it might be worth downloading the app, right? But wait, Wordle is entirely housed in a web browser, and you won’t find it in any app store. What you will find in the App Store and Google Play are games like Wordus, Wordle 2, Wordle Unlimited, Wordle 3D, and I Can’t Believe It’s Not Wordle (we made the last one up, but you get the idea). The point here is this: The creator of Wordle, Josh Wardle, had the best of intentions, wanting to create a completely free game without ads and no pestering of users to make in-game purchases. But, Wardle did not trademark his concept. And once it became a hit, app stores were flooded with Wordle clones, most of which were designed to cash in on the popularity of Wardle’s beautifully simple game. This is a cautionary tale, folks. If you have an idea for an app, game, or something in between, make sure you take the steps to trademark and protect your innovation! And if you want some advice on other measures for your concept, such as the need to register as a business before your product can be launched in the App Store, have a chat with us. #WordleClones Read more here.

🧐 Stat of the Week — 4.1 Hours Per Day on Mobile

Yup, we are back with App Annie’s State of Mobile 2022 for our Stat of the Week. The average American spent 4.1 hours per day on mobile, which puts the USA in 10th place worldwide (Brazil, with 5.4 hours, was top if you were wondering). It’s an incredible stat (App Annie describes it as “1/3 of waking hours on mobile”), and it demonstrates a widening gulf between time spent on mobile and television (3.1 hours per day). Mobile minutes first exceeded those spent watching television in 2019, and they have been on divergent paths ever since. Although, there’s often overlap: Who watches television on their smartphones✋? And who is glued to their smartphone when watching television👋👋? #MoreMobileMinutes Read more here.

🕸️ What’s dAppening?

🎾 🏸 Australian Open – Tennis Tournament Serves Up NFT Collection

Sure, the big story of the Australian Open tennis tournament has been the vaccine status – and subsequent deportation – of world no.1 Novak Djokovic, but we are way more interested in the AO’s NFT collection. There are 6,776 NFTs in the AO Art Ball collection, each of which is assigned a 19x19cm plot on the court. Each will use Hawk-Eye’s tracking data to create NFTs with unique metadata relating to a winning shot at the tournament. NFT holders will also receive real match balls from the Australian Open. The cost of an AO NFT is 0.067 ETH (about $200, which seems relatively cheap in light of the NFT boom). In other web3 news from the Australian Open, the tournament organizers have partnered with Decentraland to create a metaverse version of Melbourne Park where you can interact with other fans, play tennis (of course), and visit some of Melbourne’s famous attractions in a very cool virtual world. #AOCreatesAceNFTs Read more here.

Meanwhile at 3Advance…

We hinted at it last week and it’s clear we’re right in step with the growth that the app world is seeing – 3Advance is growing! We’ve got some really exciting client projects already in the works this year, and in light of that, our team is expanding. We are looking to hire a Product Owner to join our Product and Project team, and we also have several other roles open as well. Are you personally looking to join a company that solves real world problems with innovated entrepreneurs and businesses? Or do you know anyone that would like to apply? Check out our job openings here. 🚀 🤝